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Scotland will respond positively against France, says Grant Gilchrist

Gregor Townsend’s side started their Six Nations campaign with a 34-7 defeat to Wales in Cardiff.

Scotland crashed in Cardiff as they let one mistake multiply into another but fired-up lock Grant Gilchrist has vowed the wheels will not come off again as they look to hit back against France.

Gregor Townsend’s team looked on top against Wales in the early stages last week.

But their hopes of securing a first win in the principality went up in smoke as soon as an Ali Price pass was intercepted by Gareth Davies.

The Dragons scrum-half scampered in for the opening try after just five minutes and from there Scotland fell to pieces, eventually losing 34-7.

Townsend has responded to that crushing set-back by making six changes to his starting line-up, with lock Gilchrist returning alongside former skipper Greig Laidlaw and experienced internationalists Ryan Wilson, Peter Horne and Sean Maitland.

With prop Simon Beghan also restored, the Dark Blues XV which starts against Les Bleus on Sunday will contain 132 more caps than the side humbled by the Welsh.

And Edinburgh second-rower Gilchrist believes the introduction of those battle-hardened campaigners will prevent another collapse.

He said: “We have the experience, although we had it on the pitch last week.

“We spoke about that this week. It is one of the big lessons. The first five minutes in Cardiff was really good, but the snowball effect happened in the first half.

“It’s hard to get back when the crowd is against you. We forced some things so there are massive lessons to be learned.

“The leaders, the callers and the decision-makers have been well drilled this week in how to react when things happen.

“Mistakes happen and it’s not the end of the world. We have to look at the next job and do that to the best of our ability.”

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